Sweet Start Up Support for Kensington Cookie Company

Angels and Cookies
Angels and Cookies
A Kensington start-up that produces special ‘free-from’ cookie dough for people affected by food allergies has become the first recipient of a pioneering ‘Big Cheese’ loan from Your Credit Union.

Karen Cappetta, founder of Angels and Cookies, borrowed £2,500 from the Kensington High Street-based community bank to fund a stand at the upcoming ‘Allergy and Free From’ show to be held at Olympia on 7-9 July.

‘Big Cheese’ loans are the brainchild of the union and Portobello Business Centre, funded in partnership with the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, aimed at helping create 50 new businesses in the area a year.

The cash will enable Karen to take part in the show to help promote her 14 allergy-free gourmet ready-to-bake cookie doughs which are wheat, gluten, dairy, egg, soya, vegan, and nut-free.

“I am delighted to have been given this opportunity to promote and bring awareness about my products,” said Karen. “This small injection of capital allows me to reach out to like-minded businesses and exhibition visitors who suffer from food allergies and intolerances.

“By attending this show, we can speak to the people who can help us grow our business to the next level, at the same time officially launching the Angels & Cookies product onto the world stage.”

Angels and Cookies dough flavours include Chunky Chocolate Chip, Fantastic Fudge, Ginger and Spice, and Very Vanilla Cookie Dough.

The ‘Allergy and Free From’ show is set to attract more than 35,000 people living with allergies, coeliac disease, respiratory conditions, intolerances, skin and chemical sensitivities.

“Living with an allergy can be incredibly tough and hard on children, especially when kids see all their friends tucking into party food and snacks they are unable to eat,” added Karen.

“My mission is to make that possible by giving everyone suffering from food allergies and intolerances the possibility to indulge without harming their health while creating the best tasting ‘free-from’ food-products and so good that those who don’t have food intolerances or food allergies will not be able to tell the difference.”

William Rhodes, CEO of Your Credit Union said the community bank was thrilled to be able to support Karen to help expand her business.

"Finding access to sources of finance early on for a business is a vitally important step along the way towards sustainability and success,” said Mr Rhodes.

“It can be really tough for small firms to borrow the money they need to get their businesses off the ground despite being a viable credit risk. Even quite modest amounts can make the difference between someone taking the leap or never acting.”

Allen Pluck, Chief Executive of Portobello Business Centre said he was delighted to be able to be providing relevant support for Angels and Cookies.

“Micro businesses are the lifeblood of our community and we aim to make sure more people get access to the support they need to succeed,” said Allen.

"The support is crucial, both in terms of introduction to advice and mentoring, and in terms of access to seed-financing that is appropriate and affordable.”

The idea for Angels and Cookies came when American-Italian, former model Karen visited a close friend who has an autistic child and was asked to make a ‘free-from’ cake.

She began to experiment with gluten-free flours, and then started baking for her daughter’s birthday parties and play-dates. It was not long before she was approached by other parents asking her to bake for their children, and so the Angels and Cookies story began.

‘Big Cheese’ loans specifically support the self-employed and new micro-businesses with loans. Typically loans will be for a few thousand pounds, but could go up to £10,000.

For further information on ‘Big Cheese’ loans contact Portobello Business Centre on: 020 7460 5050 or to contact Your Credit Union visit: www.yourcu.co.uk or call: 020 7605 6341.

To order from Angels and Cookies visit www.angelsandcookies.co.uk. Karen will also be giving away samples of her cookie doughs and cookies at her stand at the Olympia Allergy and Free-From Show’.

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